JURORS have retired to consider their verdict in the murder trial of Andrew Pearson.

They listened to the final elements of a judge's summing up of evidence in a murder trial this morning.

Pearson is accused of holding Natalie Harker’s head under water until she died after intercepting her on her way to work last October.

Teesside Crown Court heard how the defendant denies doing anything to hurt Miss Harker and said it was an accident after she slipped down an embankment into a stream.

Judge Stephen Ashurst is reading through the last of the expert evidence before the jury retires to consider its verdict.

He outlined the case that the jury had heard over the previous 12 days as the murder trial draws to a close.

Miss Harker's body was found naked and bruised in a tent belonging to Pearson 12 hours after she went missing on her way to work in October last year.

The jury retired to consider its verdict at 12.38pm.